March 29, 2017

What is in the Center: Position Matters

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For today’s Whiteboard Wednesday, Art Wiers, who serves as Church Health Catalyst for the RCA Great Lakes Region, describes a valuable tool that helps ensure focus on God’s mission during church and leadership meetings.

Art gives credit to one of his colleagues, Ken Eriks, who shared this tool with him several years ago. It’s a simple tool where you put “God’s mission” in the center and then surround with three other components.

The three components are personal preferences, rooted relationships, and treasured traditions. As leaders we need to understand that the things surrounding the outside of God’s Mission aren’t necessarily wrong or bad, and that they often have some kind of value. But our challenge is to determine what position they take because position matters.

This tool helps us to understand that God’s Mission needs to always be in the center of what we’re doing. If you’re in a meeting and notice that someone’s personal preferences are starting to move the mission out of the center, it’s time to utilize the tool.

Art provided an example of a recent church board meeting he attended. Some important decisions were being made relative to the selection of a lead pastor. Some of the comments shared in the meeting centered on personal preference, while others were centered on rooted relationships. Art was grateful when the meeting facilitator, who he had been working with to help him develop as a more effective leader, drew the tool on their whiteboard. The facilitator raised the question of whether the leaders present were processing their decisions through the filter of God’s mission, or if they were leaning into personal preference. Ultimately, the tool helped reshape the meeting.

Art encourages leaders to determine how best to enfold this tool into their ministry. The tool is useful to help people understand that position really does matter, and to get a better understanding of how all of these components play a significant role in leadership.

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